Emily Hancock of Bumpus Mills, Tennessee will graduate from Murray State University May 11 with a bachelor’s degree in television production. In her undergraduate career, she has worked as a livestock manager with the Hutson School of Agriculture, a host and sideline reporter with Racer Athletics and the Ohio Valley Conference Digital Network and as an ESPN+ campus sports correspondent.

This is her story.

What do you want to do after graduation?

After graduation, I’m moving to Muletown USA (AKA Columbia, Tennessee) to work in corporate communications with Tennessee Farm Bureau Insurance. Here, I will help film, host, and produce videos, assist in the management of social media content, manage/assist corporate meetings and much more!

Why did you select Murray State?

Like so many others, I was welcomed by the warm feeling of being “at home.” Everyone wants to be in a place where they feel welcomed. I’ve always felt that my belonging is important at Murray State.

What first sparked your interest in your chosen field?

When I was a little girl, I would use my bedroom window as a makeshift television screen and pretend to broadcast news stories. I knew I was in the right field when my natural talents matched the material that was taught in the classroom. With the help of awesome professors along the way, the dream I had as a little girl has turned into a career for a young lady.

Who is one of your favorite professors and why?

Man, this one is tough! Professor Chris Haynes has been one of the most influential professors I’ve had during my time at Murray State. When I was unsure about scheduling classes, he would spend more than the appropriate amount of time to ensure I got exactly what I needed and that I’d be on the right track. When I accepted my first job, he was the first professor I told. His office door is always open for anyone to come by and say “Hello!” From the beginning of freshman year, he’s been an educator. In my final days of my senior year, it’s a pleasure getting to call him my friend.

If there is one other person whom I would love to give credit to my success, student involvement and overall enjoyment in the sports industry, it’d be Dave Winder, associate athletics director of media relations for Murray State Racer Athletics. Two weeks into my freshman year, Racer Dave (as we call him!) welcomed me into the media relations office. Because of him and his constant encouragement and coaching, I’ve gone from hosting athletes of the week to sideline reporting on the OVC Digital Network and hosting pregame broadcasts for ESPN+. Although he will always refrain from saying he has done anything to help, he’s been the best instructor, coach, and voice-of-reason mentor in my time here at Murray State.

What is one of your favorite Murray State traditions/experiences?

Hands down, watching Racer One run the track after each touchdown. The feeling you get when watching Racer One run full gallop while hearing the crowd cheer loudly is something that truly makes you feel proud to be a Murray State Racer.

What is something you’ve accomplished at Murray State that you’re most proud of and why are you proud of it?

Never once have I thought I’d be holding a microphone with the ESPN logo or get to experience the incredible atmosphere of a tournament game, but with determination and a shove out of my comfort zone, I was able to reach that remarkable point. Achieving the position of Murray State Racer Athletics’ ESPN+ campus correspondent has truly been a highlight of my collegiate career.

What opportunities have you been afforded at Murray State?

Having the opportunity to take classes that relate to my hobbies, such as, being creative through photography or being involved in the Murray State Swine Unit and assisting in livestock management.

What do you think sets Murray State apart from other universities?

Other than being nestled in the middle of the friendliest small town in America, the overwhelming feel of being welcomed and valued as a student is what sets Murray State aside from other universities. Here, Murray State is home and Racer Nation is family.

What advice would you give to incoming students?

That meeting at 7 p.m.? Go to it. That classmate who may be struggling? Smile and offer your help. Those hard tests? Embrace them. That ballgame Saturday night? Grab your friends and go! College is a great experience and getting to be a Murray State Racer is an honor.

The May 2019 commencement ceremony will take place May 11 at 9 a.m. in the CFSB Center for graduates of the Bauernfeind College of Business, College of Humanities and Fine Arts and Jesse D. Jones College of Science, Engineering and Technology, with a 2 p.m. ceremony planned for graduates of the College of Education and Human Services, Hutson School of Agriculture, School of Nursing and Health Professions and interdisciplinary studies (Associate of General Studies and BIS Degrees). Use #RacerGraduation on social media to share your commencement experience. Additional information about the ceremony and a live stream link are available at murraystate.edu/commencement.

Photo: Pictured is soon to be Murray State graduate Emily Hancock.

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